Moshi Monsters: The Movie (U)

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The ViewLondon Review

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Review byMatthew Turner18/12/2013

Three out of Five stars
Running time: 81 mins

Brightly animated and packed both with likeable characters and catchy songs, Moshi Monsters: The Movie is likely to prove a huge hit with its target audience, while the witty script cleverly ensures that dragged-along adults won't feel entirely alienated.

What's it all about?
Co-directed by Wip Vernooij and Morgan Francis, Moshi Monsters: The Movie is based on the hugely popular online game for children (target age 6 to 12) in which players adopt one of six virtual pet monsters (Tamagotchi-style) and take them on a series of adventures within Monstro City. When the fabled Great Moshling Egg is stolen by the sinister Doctor Strangeglove (voiced by musician Ashley Slater), plucky, karate-kicking rabbit-slash-cat creature Katsuma (Emma Tate) volunteers to collect the various objects demanded by Strangeglove in exchange for the egg's safe return.

Accompanying Katsuma on his quest are his various Moshling friends (i.e. the five other characters offered in the game), sensible pink kitten-esque Poppet (Phillipa Alexander), yellow elephant-dog hybrid Mr Snoodle, zombie rocker Zommer (Slater again), cute flying strawberry Luvli (Tate again), demonic-looking Diavlo (Keith Wickham) and cuddly Yeti-like Furi (Tom Clarke Hill).

The Good
The characters are extremely likeable and appealingly designed (although their enormous, blissed-out eyes are a little disconcerting) and the voice performances are nicely done, with Ashley Slater particularly good value as the headless (but top-hatted) Doctor Strangeglove and Boris Hiestand suitably slimy as Strangeglove's hench-creature Fishlips. In addition, the brightly coloured animation is expertly rendered throughout, skilfully blending both 2D and 3D visual effects in surprisingly effective fashion.

The film's strongest element is the script, which keeps the adventure simple enough for its target audience but also contains some enjoyable wordplay (Monstro City/monstrosity being a good example) a variety of clever film references (notably the Indiana Jones movies) and some subtle digs at reality TV culture to keep adults entertained. On top of that, there are a number of catchy songs with inventively witty lyrics, the highlight of which is a Bollywood-esque (or Jollywood in the film) number called Bobbi SingSong.

The Bad
The main drawback with the film is only that parents are likely to be bombarded with requests for Moshi merchandise immediately after the film ends. There's also the vague feeling that the film is so weirdly appealing that it must be hypnotising you, Japanese-animation-style (there are explicit references to hypnotism in the film), but it probably isn't hypnotising you. Probably.

Worth seeing?
Moshi Monsters: The Movie is a surprisingly enjoyable animated children's adventure that should appeal greatly to both Moshi fans (over 80 million of them, according to Wikipedia) and young newcomers alike, while dragged-along adults are likely to have a better time than they might be expecting.

Film Trailer

Moshi Monsters: The Movie (U)
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Content updated: 14/12/2017 00:30

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